International Speaker Series: Greg Deering
Date and Time:
Thursday, September 26, 2013 at 12:15 p.m.
Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice CD
The Ahlers Center for International Business welcomes:
Founder, Deering Banjos
"Building a Global Brand, One Banjo at a Time"
Mr. Deering will share the story of Deering Banjos, and its 38-year history from a small family-owned business to a global leader in banjo sales. Founded in San Diego, Deering Banjos still maintains administrative and manufacturing headquarters here, surviving against low-cost Chinese imports and costly California labor laws. Greg Deering will his story of starting with nothing but a passion to succeed, propelling his company into a global brand that dominates the banjo market.
Mr. Deering began learning woodworking from his father at the age of two by building model airplanes with him. Growing up in San Diego, young Deering received his firts tools and tool box which he carefully laid out in his wagon on his third birthday. Many of these tools he still has today. Mr. Deering made his first banjo as an industrial arts major at San Diego State College, and in 1970 at the age of nineteen, he joined other enterprising young college students at the American Dream Co-Op, where he began doing instrument repairs and building banjos. The co-op would become the birthplace of at least four now world-renowned instrument manufacturers - a true tribute to the concept of the American dream. Soon after in 1975, Greg and his wife Janet started the Deering Banjo Company as a family business. Today, over 38 years later, the Deering Banjo Company has sold over 90,000 banjos, with about 30% of sales now overseas.